Town criers will be ringing the changes this weekend as the biggest reorganisation of council structures in nearly 50 years takes effect.

On Saturday, 1 April, Westmorland and Furness Council officially takes over responsibility for all council services across the Barrow, Eden and South Lakeland areas and the existing Barrow Borough, Eden District and South Lakeland District councils, along with Cumbria County Council, will be dissolved.

Town criers will proclaim the vesting of the new Westmorland and Furness Council at 1pm at Barrow Town Hall, Market Place in Kendal and the Bandstand on Cornmarket in Penrith town centre, before pinning up the formal ‘proclamation’ for all to see.

Westmorland and Furness Council will be England’s third largest unitary authority by area when it comes into effect this weekend, providing services to approximately 225,000 residents.

In the biggest change to local government structures since 1974, Government announced its decision to create two new unitary councils for Cumbria in July 2021. Since then work has been carried out to create the two new authorities.

Westmorland and Furness Council will provide services – including waste and recycling collections, children’s services, planning, highways and adult social care – in the current Barrow, Eden and South Lakeland areas, while the new Cumberland Council takes over the delivery of services in Carlisle, Allerdale and Copeland.

Sam Plum, Westmorland and Furness Council’s Chief Executive, said: “Saturday will be a significant day for local government in this area.

“We have worked very hard over the last 18 months to prepare for this moment and to ensure that the key services our communities rely on will continue unaffected.

“We have ambitious plans for the future and we are looking forward to starting the work to improve and transform services so that we can deliver the very best outcomes for our residents, customers and communities.’’

To find out more about Westmorland and Furness Council, go to www.westmorlandandfurness.gov.uk

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